The main focus of the program is examination of complex tasks of curating and art criticism, with an emphasis on theoretical and practical application. The program will primarily be focused on contemporary art and art criticism.
The recent years have seen the worldwide trend for biennials of contemporary art and culture’s turn toward “festivalization”. Contemporary exhibitions are changing, with new strategies involving innovative display structures and new media interfaces. Curators are now working in increasingly close collaboration with artists, architects, designers, and educators on the development of exhibitions; implementation of projects in public spaces; design of museum spaces; and presentation of collections. With these developments the profession and authority of curator becomes more important than before. Increasing trend of professionalization of curating led to proliferation of curatorial and museum studies programs around the world.
Recognizing expanding role of curator in contemporary art, and scarcity of curatorial programs in the country, the Open Society Georgia Foundation (OSGF) decided to address the need through series of workshops.
The purpose of the current project is to strenthen the capacity in the area of arts curatorship and perhaps, shape a program which can be adopted by art schools. The workshops will stimulate deliberations, discussions, and exchange of ideas on issues in the current curating context, and build an academic discourse around the practice of critical curating, while keeping institutional development at the foreground of the program.
The workshop will examine key issues related to contemporary exhibition-making through taught modules, group activities, and practical project work. The program will focus on cooperative, interdisciplinary working methods and provide participants with an indepth enquiry into the key areas of curatorial practice and relevant theory. Participants will be given tools to assess the context of their curatorial work, and critically assess their own practice. The program will address the following issues among others:
* Objectives and purposes of art museum and galleries in the twenty-first century;
* Function of art museums and other art institutions in a city and with particular communities;
* Difference between criticism, curatorial writing and art history;
* Art market operation and the role of curator;
* Innovative practices for presentation cultural artefacts through interdisciplinary collaboration;
* Curating through political and economic transformations;
* Assesing contemporary art infrastructure of the region.
The first workshop will be held in Tbilisi November 4-5, 2011 and in Batumi on November 7. It will be led by the internationally renowned expert Beral Madra, Director, BM Contemporary Art Center in Istanbul, a founding member of the Foundation for Future Culture and Art, AICA Turkey and Anadolu Kültür AS, and a free lance art critic and curator since 1980. Her curatorial works include: 1st (1987) and 2nd (1989) Istanbul Biennale; Pavilion of Turkey at the 44th, 45th, 49th, 50th, 51st Venice Biennale between 1990-2005; as well as numerous exhibitions in Turkey as well as many European countries. Ms.Madra’s teaching experience includes teaching at Art Management department, Faculty of Art and Design of Yildiz Technical University (1998-2002) and at Art Management Department of Yeditepe University (2005-2006).
Beral Madra will present together with an artist Hakan Gürsoytrak, who is also teaching at the Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University.
Participant profile: A maximum of 50 participants will be selected for the workshops.
Participants must have a professional experience in contemporary art, including curators, museum employees, gallerists, art critics, journalists, NGOs, academia and students. English language knowledge is desirable. Interested persons should send their resumes and motivation letters to the following e-mail address: by October 15, 2011.
For additional information please contact Ani Riaboshenko, Arts and Culture Network Program Coordinator at , or by phone 225 04 63 (ext.124), 599 25 13 93 (cell), address: Open Society Georgia Foundation, 10, Chovelidze St.